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53 Commander vs. 54 Champion parts swap

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  • #16
    Originally posted by lelshaddai View Post
    Are the rear and front springs really different between the 53 Commander and 54 Champion? The manual stats the front springs are the same by name/brand but it mentions they have different free length. The manual also states the Champion and Commander rear springs to be the same size and same number of leafs(4). I have seen some springs with five. I am trying to read the parts books and manuals but do not have a clear answer. Also the radiators appear to be the same, same dimensions, 3 row. If I do not need to swap these parts it would be nice, especially the front coils. Are the part numbers on them somewhere? Getting conflicting information.
    Jim please forgIve me, for making a statement that seems, it should be so blatantly obvious that it's likely not that much help? Although I don't have my parts catalog handy at the moment, I can say that if it doesn't list springs for 4H and 5H C&K bodies under the same part # as those for 14G and 15G C&K bodies? They are different parts!

    Originally posted by Corvanti View Post
    others will be along with more/better info but if the Champion was "original", it came with a 170-6 so the springs and suspension may need some upgrading for the heavier V8.

    if i recall correctly, the '54 frame is slightly thicker than the '53. that's good.
    As I understand the Studebaker chassis situation, at least as it applies to the '53 & '54 C&K models, it is that the Commander (4H & 5H) models have slightly thicker frames than the Champion (14G & 15G) models! From '55 on, all models used the same thicker steel in the chassis. However people have now been installing V8s in these chassis for nearly 65 years. Not much endures such an expanse of time, without some degree of deterioration! Not all of which is easily detectable. The #3 crossmember or batwing, as it is often referred to, which was mentioned previously, would be a benefit no matter which chassis it is used on, wasn't installed on the C&K bodies until the '54 model year. I'd expect the '54 Champion chassis to be fine with any level of sane street horsepower you plan to use with it!


    S2Deluxe = (5H - C3).


    • #17
      Trust me, you cannot use Champion Six Front Coil Springs in a V8 Car, there is a difference between a "Lowered" Car and "Flat" Coil Springs.

      Some people can deal with Lowered, but when you drop a V8 into a 6 Cylinder Car, the Coils bottom because those springs were made to support around 200 Lbs. less, so you end up "riding on a Rail!"

      Been there, done that.
      Second Generation Stude Driver,
      Proud '54 Starliner Owner


      • #18
        Thank you. I picked up a V8 set of coils and a 5 leaf set of rear springs. They will be replaced. Just want to do this correctly.
        51 Studebaker Starlight State Commander Coupe
        53 Studebaker Starlight Regal Commander Coupe
        62 Volvo PV544 Sport